A trusted friend recently asked if I had seen the film “The Siege of Ruby Ridge.” I had not before but took the opportunity to do so. Considering that Hollywood is a lie factory, the film seems fairly honest, as far as one can tell.
Let’s always remember the facts. Federal agents, in a clear case of entrapment, made a charge against Randy Weaver in an attempt to coerce him to testify against others, which he refused. He failed to comply with an order to appear in federal court, knowing that he would be imprisoned or coerced.
Six Federal marshals, heavily armed and in camo and body armor, invaded the Weaver’s land. The did not announce themselves as law officers on legitimate duty. One agent blew a hole in the back of the Weavers’ 14-year-old son as he was retreating. A friend living with the Weavers killed the shooter.
The death of a federal officer incited even more brutal reprisal. The Weaver homestead was soon surrounded and besieged by 200 “law officers” from six different agencies, with armoured vehicles. Federal officials changed the rules of engagement to allow their people to kill on sight. A foreign mercenary, hired and trained by the U.S. government, firing from concealment, murdered Vicki Weaver.
Remember: Mrs. Weaver, an American woman against whom there were no charges, was standing in the doorway of her home holding her baby when she was murdered by the U.S. government. It is hard to imagine any more flagrant abuse of citizens by federal power. In a sane and free society Vicki Weaver would have a monument and a commemorative postage stamp. In later court testimony, the assassin seemed satisfied with his act.
The siege continued for a week. Besieged were Randy Weaver and his friend, both wounded, and three little girls, one an infant. The besieged finally surrendered and Weaver was later exonerated in court. None of the federal murderers received any punishment.
Along with the later murders by federal agents at Waco, the truth ought to have sunk in. Federal agents can freely kill innocent people if the people have been demonized by the press as right wing. If you are a normal American, an unwoke and disobedient “deplorable” as Hillary Clinton put it, or one of Obama’s contemptible people who cling to their guns and Bibles, remember you are fair game.
The Library of Congress sells reproductions of the “three most important” American historical documents: The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Emancipation Proclamation. The first two are about self-government of the people. The third is an unconstitutional executive order designed to encourage murder of Americans who did not obey federal power under the Republican party. It did not free a single person.
Clyde Wilson is a distinguished Professor Emeritus of History at the University of South Carolina He is the author or editor of over thirty books and published over 600 articles, essays and reviews